Angel Has risen, Overcomer does just that, Ready or Not dances around the (chart’s) border like Cassius Clay, and Other Box Office News.
Note: this article originally ran on Set the Tape (link).
Since we didn’t convene last week, a quick little recap for those who don’t go and source Box Office results in the instances when I don’t pen one of these write-ups. A middlingly-promoted niche-filler outperformed its studio’s somewhat modest expectations to take the top spot with a good-not-great opening that just squeaked past $20 million (Good Boys), a Wednesday release whose studio had expected big things performed quite abysmally across all five days despite surprisingly strong reviews (The Angry Birds Movie 2), the new horror hotness made its studio’s aggressive pre-weekend forecasting look like an absolute joke by properly bombing (47 Meters Down: Uncaged), and everything else cannibalised themselves to death whilst The Lion King continued to crush records because dropping five Wide Release films on one day was obviously going to make that happen how goddamn thick do you have to be (Blinded by the Light and Where’d You Go, Bernadette?)?
So, now that we’re all caught up, let’s get onto this week’s results in which a middlingly-promoted niche-filler outperformed its studio’s somewhat modest expectations to take the top spot with a good-not-great opening that just squeaked past $20 million (Angel Has Fallen), a Wednesday release whose studio had expected big things performed quite abysmally across all five days despite surprisingly strong reviews (Ready or Not), the new horror hotness made its studio’s aggressive pre-weekend forecasting look like an absolute joke by properly bombing (see prior), and The Lion King continued to crush records because the only other Wide Release to make waves worth a damn was another glurge-y faith drama (Overcomer) because I guess the collective rest of Hollywood decided to purposefully take an L for the rest of this year as who can honestly challenge The Mouse by this point? Look, I try not to be cynical about this industry I care unreasonably largely about, but they don’t make it easy on me some-ever.
In contrast to last week, though, there were actual Limited Releases going on. A lot of Limited Releases, maybe too many honestly, because next week is Labor Day Weekend and jack and shit gets released over that three-day period. Leading the charge and having lapped the rest of its competition multiple times over was Paul Downs Colaizzo’s Brittany Runs a Marathon which raised $175,969 from 5 screens (a PTA of $35,194) for the worthy cause of Amazon Studios’ fat pockets. And, because if you’re anything like me then you may be thinking this too: no, he’s not the Broad City Paul Downs, this is somebody entirely different. Next-best on law of Per-Theatre Averages was the Miles Davis documentary Birth of Cool which jazzed up $17,580 from its single screen, soon followed by American-Russian dramedy Give Me Liberty with $33,391 from 3 screens (a PTA of $11,130 + change), and with middling queer period romance biopic Vita & Virginia bringing up the rear at just $4,047 from its sole screen. Located somewhere in the middle of those, meanwhile, was Mexican dark-fantasy horror Tigers Are Not Afraid which may have been highly acclaimed by critics but just couldn’t put find an audience, only managing $30,700 from 6 screens (a PTA of $5,117), which I am entirely putting down to that janky-ass name. Not that I want every horror movie to have the kind of title that one finds in the £1 DVD bin at your local petrol station, but surely those in charge could have picked something less “pre-schooler’s picture-book,” right?
This Full List will be Nina Simone defecating on your microphone.
US Box Office Results: Friday 23rd August 2019 – Sunday 25th August 2019
1] Angel Has Fallen
$21,250,000 / NEW
Sure, it’s the lowest opening in this franchise’s history, but it’s also the first time that any of these films have managed to hit the #1 slot on the chart so I guess I get to strap in for EVEN MORE of these FUCKING AWFUL movies. Thanks, guys. Dave Bond’s got a more apathetic take you should go check out.
2] Good Boys
$11,750,000 / $42,057,505
Only a 45% drop between weekends, which I think may be one of the best of the year for a Wide Release film which opened at #1? Good for this movie I haven’t seen yet because my life has been a total forking shambles this past couple of weeks but Dave Bond has mentioned is really good and that I’m going to see within the next week anyway! When good movies do well, everybody wins!
$8,200,000 / NEW
Speaking of overcoming stuff, Dave Bond’s managed to overcome the halfway-ish mark in his retrospectives covering the James Bond series on the road to the movie formerly known as Bond 25, training his license to kill on the confused The Spy Who Loved Me. Don’t worry, there are people other than Dave writing for this website, but the initial set-up of plugs just happened to work out as rule-of-threes in this particular instance so I had to pay it off.
4] The Lion King
$8,150,000 / $510,635,735
Disney, I know you got some spare change laying around somewhere in the flaps of the sofa sat in your Scrooge McDuck money-pit. There is no excuse for this Lady and the Tramp poster to look as disturbingly uncanny and amateur hour as it does. Just because you evidently don’t need to try anymore since all your competition is busy committing seppuku and you’ve got millions of people so indoctrinated into your cult that you can make Sony out to be the bad guy in your public dick-measuring contest over Spider-Man negotiations despite the horrendous terms you’ve put on the table… you should probably still fucking try, y’know?
5] Hobbs & Shaw
$8,140,000 / $147,701,255
$102 million opening weekend in China, the largest ever in August for the region. What did I tell you? China loves them some Fast & Furious, almost as much as they love violently suppressing and demonising Hong Kong protestors.
6] Ready or Not
$7,550,000 / $10,578,148 / NEW
Brooker’s currently down London-way for FrightFest 2019, providing daily dispatches on the litany of spooks and spoops he’s voluntarily drowning himself in like the absolute madman that he is! In fact, his last dispatch at time of writing had him checking out Ready or Not and having a whale of a time so maybe you should all just go see this movie already to make him slightly less cranky. He’s had to do karaoke on a Sunday night, do you not appreciate everything this man goes through for you people?!
7] The Angry Birds Movie 2
$6,365,000 / $27,091,263
Better than expected and at times genuinely funny when director Thurop van Orman (The Marvellous Misadventures of Flapjack) gets to cut a little loose with gonzo physical comedy, ultimately let down by the main characters being unfunny annoying jerks and drowning proceedings in enough on-the-nose jokey music cues to power a drivetime local radio show for six months or longer. In other words, it’s an Ice Age sequel which is not something I expected to sit through again. Based on these numbers, I guess I won’t have to in future.
8] Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark
$6,000,000 / $50,489,202
Despite averaging four films a day and writing those little mini-dispatches and having a social life whilst he’s down there, Brooker has also managed to find the time to write a full extended review of this one because he is, as previously established, a #madlad. Here’s hoping he’s not being roasted to death by this evil heat whilst on the beat.
9] Dora and the Lost City of Gold
$5,200,000 / $43,099,953
“Esta fue una mala idea y Paramount claramente no tiene absolutamente ninguna idea de lo que están haciendo.” That means “this was a bad idea and Paramount clearly have absolutely no fucking idea what they are doing anymore” in Spanish!
10] Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood
$5,000,000 / $123,187,467
Loved this, hoping to go back a second time, been ruminating on it constantly since opening night, and really embarrassed that my being a pedantic asshat in sticking on the ellipsis in all my typings of the title ended up being in completely the wrong part of the title anyway. Nothing worse than a pedant who isn’t actually correct about the thing they’re smugly insisting on doing.
Dropped out: 47 Meters Down: Uncaged, The Art of Racing in the Rain, Blinded by the Light
Callie Petch is caught by the river, coming undone.